University of Washington Professional and Continuing Education marked its 100th birthday in grand style today (June 10) with the announcement of a glass sculpture from a UW alumnus who is also among the biggest names in art: Dale Chihuly.
“Deep Purple and Azure Centennial Seaform Set,” is a clamshell-like glass piece about 30 inches wide that now resides on the top floor of the UW Tower. The piece cradles smaller trumpets, globes and other shapes.
The piece, from his Seaform series, is the third by Chihuly currently at the UW. The other two are “Six Starbursts,” an anemone wall in the Meany Hall West Lobby and “Chinook Red Chandelier” at the UW Tacoma Library Tower.
UW President Michael Young and the artist were both present Monday at a small ceremony at the UW Tower noting the long-term loan of the piece to the university. In appreciation, Young presented Chihuly with a bottle of wine made by the Woodinville winery Matthews Estate, which is operated by UW alumni.
“Dale is a celebrated alumnus and a great friend to the University of Washington. He has been named one of the university’s Top 100 Alumni. He has inspired exciting new avenues of art and education through his innovative work and the Dale Chihuly Endowed Chair in the College of Arts and Sciences,” Young said. “His support and a growing collection of his visionary pieces are a cornerstone of the UW’s legacy in the arts. It’s a tremendous honor and privilege to showcase his extraordinary work.”
David Szatmary, vice provost for UW Educational Outreach, which includes Professional and Continuing Education, noted that the department increases access to the UW for nearly 47,000 additional students every year, plus thousands more served through open online courses.
“Providing ongoing education for students of diverse ages, stages and walks of life has been a key part of the UW mission for 100 years,” Szatmary said, adding that the artwork “is a fitting tribute to the thousands of students, faculty members, instructors, dedicated staff and campus and community partners who exemplify the very best in lifelong learning.”
Chihuly earned his undergraduate degree in art from the UW in 1965. Other UW awards have followed: He received the UW Alumnus Summa Laude Dignatus Award in 1993 and the UW College of Arts and Sciences Distinguished Alumnus Award in 1996. He was also among the recipients of the College of Arts and Sciences Timeless Awards during the 150th year celebrations in 2012.